Friday, February 10, 2012

All you need is love . . .

Yes, that day is coming soon- February 14. Valentine's Day. The day for hearts and roses, hugs and kisses, and shoe boxes stuffed with tiny cards featuring colorful characters and goofy greetings. People have very different views about this holiday. Is it a day meant only for sweethearts? A money-making opportunity for florists, greeting card companies, chocolate makers, and jewelry stores? Is it just another day?

Here at the 3 Things blog, we have opposing views about Valentine's Day. Big surprise, huh? As an ol' married lady with two kids my perspective is much different than my counterpart - the single guy. After all, he is single, and well, he's a guy. My hubby T says Valentine's Day is a holiday for women, and I do believe Brian seconds that opinion (he can correct me if I'm wrong.)

As a married lady of 16 years and counting, and a mom, Valentine's Day to me is not about expensive presents, romantic getaways, or lacy lingerie. It's about celebrating the ones I love by sharing small, simple gifts like cards and candy, or hearts and hugs.

With that in mind, we will share with you 3 Good Things about Valentine's Day from 2 very different viewpoints.


2. Heart-shaped eats: Valentine's Day is a day to make and eat heart-shaped food. One year, before Miss O and her little bro A came along, I made T a heart-shaped pizza. Last year, I surprised them all with mini heart-shaped hamburgers for dinner. This year, I'm thinking something sweet. Perhaps cookies, brownies, or chocolate cake. Festive and fun, yummy goodness!

3. Valentine greetings: Sweet homemade (or even store bought cards) from the kids to me, and to the kids from their grandparents, their aunts and uncles, and their friends and classmates, too. I enjoy receiving a thoughtful Valentine from my sweetie in which he expresses his undying love and devotion to me - HA! I especially like the XXXOOO's from T, or cute drawings from the kids.

1. CHOCOLATE! The other day, while watching our usual Thursday night television line up, a commercial for a diamond heart necklace packaged with Godiva chocolate gems kept popping up. "I would take the chocolate, not the necklace," I told T. Knowing me well, he laughed and agreed. While jewelry is lovely, chocolate is divine, and much less expensive, too!


Indeed I concur with Mr. T there! I've been down the VD road... that's short for Valentines Day, but just as painful... a whole bunch of times and I have a question. What makes this a holiday that men have to pony up for and women are essentially off the hook? We see that in TV sitcoms - the guy didn't remember something for VD or for that matter an anniversary - and he gets raked over the coals, but there's no mention that the woman in the equation lifted a finger. My personal love-life-experience has lined up with that, except I was the dutiful guy, with the card, the flowers, the special events and so on. I did mess up once and I took full responsibility there, but that's another story.

With that in the back of my mind, but now off my chest, here are my good things!

2) Flowers I love flowers - love giving them and I don't mind receiving them. If you've ever been to my home (ok... that's hardly anyone) you've seen that I often have some fresh cut flower or something going on.

3) Cards I love cards! I send them out for the fun of it, and I love sending a good birthday card. In this case, the VD cards are a little limiting, but a box of school-type valentines goes a long way for just a couple of bucks.

1) Specialness is that a word? I say it is. I enjoy the spirit of loving kindess around the day. I don't mind the "Happy Valentine's Day" exchange and don't mind seeing the reds and pinks with candy hearts and trite sayings. It's a major cheese-fest and I'm a cheesy guy. I'm really a hopeful romantic. It's fun to feel special!

One more note on the single-side:
If you're in love, if you're in a couple, please be sensitive to those who aren't. Don't forget that the weeks leading up to, and the day itself, can be a powerful reminder that we can feel rather alone. Sometimes we feel alone in a very real sense because we live in a world that holds up couple-ness above all. As you approach us, platitudes are not helpful and please don't worry about trying to include us in your VD plans. Think about being thoughtful to your single friends at other times. We love coming over for dinner. We love hanging out with you and we don't feel as much like a 3rd wheel as you think we might. We're kinda cool like that. (and I'm available for dinner most evenings during the week).

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